re: facebook---I don't really use facebook (I have an account and accept friend requests etc., but don't go on there much---mostly because it was causing me to dislike/lose respect for a lot of people I had otherwise liked; people write stupid things on facebook! :)) and haven't interacted with the YW on there. I don't really see a need for it. However, texting is something I've used with the YW pretty often. I didn't have texting on my phone and had rarely if ever used it before this calling, but now I have it and love that way of getting in touch with the YW (those who have their own phones, which isn't all of them). They respond fast and it's easy.
re: not telling them they are "the greatest generation"---totally agree, in fact I gave a lesson recently on how they aren't the greatest generation. :) Not in those exact words (though I did use that as an attention-getter)---but I did talk about the fact that they need to actually BE great, and do BETTER, rather than just think smugly how "chosen" and special they are. I also gave a lesson after camp about how spiritual experiences mean nothing if we don't follow them up with action (I referenced the talk by Elder Holland, "Cast not away therefore your confidence"---awesome talk) and how often after times of emotional/spiritual high, we can experience temptation and trial which we need to get through by ACTING on what we felt and were prompted to do. Oh yes, and all of us have the girls call us by "Sister ___"---that's a rule from our bishop anyway, but I endorse it! So I guess I am on the same wavelength as some of you. You may now send all your wonderful daughters to be in my YW group. :) I really like your Miriam, Andrea; when will she be 12? She's only 8 or 9 maybe?
re: Andrea's comment "My hysterics come from my deep maternal insecurities. What am I doing as a mother to help my children develop testimonies turns into an agonized, "Help me here--it takes a village!!!" Instead of receiving that support I am explaining to my children why the speaker's clothes are not modest and why no, it is definitely not okay to say that, and why are they having a party in primary on the Sabbath????"---I have felt this too. I think I always tend to feel like I'm more competent than other people (prideful, I know; I'm trying to fight it) so I get especially impatient when people seem inefficient or sloppy or lazy or too worldly or whatever. But one more thing that just occurred to me. When I hear stories of other wards' youth programs (like the ones Misfit cites), or other "horror stories" people tell about their ward activites, crazy bishops, etc., I often feel depressed and worried about the future of the church. But with my own wards, even though sometimes I get annoyed with various people or think they are doing things the wrong way (like I think my stake president is kind of weird and he is always coming up with these strange policies, etc.)---I generally don't get that overall depressed/helpless/hopeless feeling. Like, I look around in ward council in my ward now and I feel optimistic, like there is no problem we can't solve together, because I KNOW all these people are there because they love God and want to serve Him and do what's right. I feel like we might individually make mistakes, but we will learn from each other and keep each other in line and the ward will progress. We talk ALL THE TIME in that meeting about how to better share our testimonies, how to become like Zion, how to deepen the YWs' testimonies, bearing powerful testimony as part of our lessons, how to keep our YM firm and make them better missionaries, etc. We're all on that same page. It's just very reassuring and makes me less inclined to panic about the future. So I guess it could be
a.) I have just been lucky to be in exceptionally good wards where the horror stories don't happen, and most ward councils would NOT give me that reassuring feeling
or b.) my wards are pretty typical, and the panic comes when you are hearing about vague, generic "other people" and you don't actually KNOW those people. But if you did know them, you would know their good as well as their bad qualities, so you wouldn't be so horrified. You would think, "Oh that Sister Johnson, I can't believe she thought it was a good idea to have an American Idol party, but she does love the girls and I love the way she makes them see how fun marriage can be" or whatever.
What do you think? Wrong? should I be more alarmist?